Kobe Bryant’s last game on the road was a face-off with the Oklahoma City Thunder on Monday, as rapper Kendrick Lamar debuted a new ESPN tribute video for the Hall of Famer.
Though Bryant didn’t score the magnitude of points he did in his heyday, USA Today reports the Los Angeles Lakers guard/forward received an unusually warm welcome in the arena. The crowd chanted his name twice. First, “We want Kobe, we want Kobe,” and later, “Kobe, Kobe.”
Bryant scored 13 points total – all made within the first quarter. The Thunder went on to win the game 112-79, but Kobe has done well for himself over the course of his career. Of the five 30-point games he’s had this season, three of them were scored on the road.
The soon-to-be retiree later retreated to the locker room, and though cheers urged him to make one more appearance on the court, the 6’6″ baller said he couldn’t manage to do it.
“I played the first quarter,” Bryant said to USA Today. “I tried to give it all I had. I tried to loosen up in the locker room coming out for the second half, but I couldn’t move well at all.”
Coach Byron Scott said he’ll have Bryant play more than he has during the season for the last game in the L.A. Staples Center against the Utah Jazz this Wednesday.
“It’s just going to be bananas,” Scott told USA Today.
As Bryant’s NBA career comes to a close, Kendrick Lamar put together a tribute video for ESPN. Created with sports journalist Scoop Jackson, the 3-minute and 15-second clip features Lamar reading Jackson’s tribute to Bryant, the second tribute to make recent news. The Compton, California rapper enthusiastically recites the piece as the Lakers player’s highlights roll. The clip is titled “Fade to Black” and Pitchfork reports it features Lamar’s song, “untitled 07 | levitate” from his latest album.
Watch the video below.